Leveled- Jay Crownover

“Bad stuff happens sometimes and it happens to people we care about. You can’t live life insulated because you are scared of getting to close.”- Rome, Leveled

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Title: Leveled
Author: Jay Crownover
Series: Saints of Denver
Publication Date: November 2, 2015
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
We all need a hero…let the Saints of Denver begin.
Orlando Frederick knows what it is to be leveled by pain. Instead of focusing on his own, he’s made it his mission to help others: sports stars, wounded war vets, survivors of all kinds. But when Dom, a rugged, damaged, sinfully attractive cop, makes his way into Lando’s physical therapy practice, he might be the biggest challenge yet. Lando loved one stubborn man before and barely survived the fallout. He’s not sure he can do it again.
Dominic Voss is a protector. The police badge he wears is not only his job, it’s his identity, so when he’s sidelined because of an injury, the only thing he cares about is getting back on the force. He expects Lando to mend his body, he just doesn’t realize the trainer will also have him working toward a hell of a lot more. As attraction simmers and flares, Dom sees that Lando needs repair of his own…if only the man will let him close enough to mend what’s broken.
Disclaimer: This is an M/M book, a fiction work with an intimate relationship between two men at its center, so if this type of romance is not your cup of tea, this may not be the book for you.
The Saint of Denver is the spin-off series of Jay Crownover’s Marked Men series. If you want to know more about the Marked Men series, you can check out my full review HERE.The Saints of Denver takes place in the same setting as the Marked Men series, in Denver Colorado, but with a whole new cast of characters and whole new set of issues. Originally, Leveled was a story that was meant to come later in the series, but Crownover wanted to connect the Marked Men series with her new Saints of Denver series and what better way to bring together the old with the new by telling the story of Orlando and Dominic (#DomLan).
Orlando (Lando), from the Marked Men series, knows the pain of loss after losing his boyfriend Remy Archer in a car accident. Still struggling to move on, he makes a vow to help those who are suffering by becoming a physical therapist. He spend his days helping others put themselves back together. The irony of it all is that Lando can’t seem to put himself back together. Cue Dominic (Dom), the irresistibly attractive cop, to save the day. After being hurt on the job. Dominic is hoping that Lando will take him on as a client and help return him to his former glory. What Lando doesn’t realize is that he’s going to need Dom more than he thinks.
I think Crownover made a smart move by releasing this little novella earlier than planned because it tied up a lot of loose ends that were still remaining from the Marked Men series in regards to Remy and Lando’s relationship. We finally get to see the struggle that the couple had because Remy was not ready to tell his parents that he was gay and Lando’s confession was probably my favorite part of the book. Seeing him just come undone and face all the guilt that he has just been keeping locked up brought me to tears. 
Dom was an interesting character because he’s this flirtatious guy who loves to have a good time, but he also has this other side to him where he cares deeply for those in his life and he actually ends up making a big sacrifice for Lando which I was not expecting, but it ended up being so worth it in the end.
The thing I LOVE about Crownover’s writing is how she manages to weave in characters from previous books into the current book and being able to see the Marked Men cast gave me ALL THE FEELS because I just love them SO MUCH. I love the banter between DomLan because they were so cute and my cheeks were so red while reading those steamy scenes! 
Even though this novella was short, I think it packed a punch! I love the relationship and the journey of rediscovery as our two guys tackled their issues together. Plus, ALL THE FEELS between these two!
If this little novella is any indication for how the rest of the Saints of Denver series is going to be, I’M EXCITED!! I can’t wait for January to come so I can read Built, the next book in this series, because it’s going to be GOOD FREAKIN’ FANTASTIC! I already have strong feelings about our next couple and I think there will be lots of laughing and lots of crying. JANUARY WHERE ARE YOU?!





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I'm Ari, a local NYC bibliophile and a forever daydreamer. You can usually find me with my nose buried in a book and my head up in the clouds. I am also a coffee addict and a chocolate connoisseur. I fell in love with the romance genre about three years ago and I haven't been able to stop reading about happily-ever-afters, which is ironic because I'm a bit of a cynical romantic in real life, haha. I hope you all enjoy my blog and fangirling with me about all the smutty reads!

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